While some of the country is still fighting cold or stormy weather, many of us in Oregon have seen a bit more sunshine recently. This warmer weather encourages us to try to find even more time to get outside and enjoy the outdoors. And while we know that getting out, exercising, and experiencing nature is important for our well-being, we do need to remember how to do it safely. We are reminded that the basics include dressing appropriately (including helmets on bikes and scooters), protecting ourselves from sun and insects, hydrating, making sure we have the proper skills to do what we are doing safely, and to make sure a friend or loved one knows where we are going if we are adventuring at a distance.
Additionally, whether we are commuting from work or on a pleasure outing, we need to avoid being distracted while we get from point A to B. While we commonly talk about the importance of not being distracted while driving, let’s not forget how it is important during all of our movement. Have you ever seen someone walk into a wall or post because they were texting (or done it yourself)? Here’s a few additional tips to keep us safe while we are out and about.
- If you need to check your phone or text, stop walking, moving, driving, or riding your bike (or scooter, skates ,or whatever other mode you use) first.
- Follow the rules of the trail or road, including stopping for pedestrians in crosswalks if you are cycling.
- While running, walking or cycling, keep in mind that ear buds keep you from hearing important warnings (not to mention the quietness or beauty of the natural world around us). If you are in an area where others might be passing you, or coming up from behind (such as a trail) or in a secluded area alone, it’s a good idea to only have one bud in your ear, or to skip them all together.
- Remember how quickly accidents can happen, and how lost we can sometimes be in conversation (sometimes even with ourselves), and be mindful of the environment surrounding you.
We hope you are able to find some time to relax and replenish your energy and spirit. Do you have other tips? We’d love to hear them.